Becoming Focused on Purpose
“What was I doing?” Most people have walked into a room and looked around and realized they have no idea why they are in that room. Somewhere between where they started and where they ended the purpose got lost. I am beginning to realize that my life has been like that in more way than one.
Yesterday I sat down to complete some projects for clients. I opened Facebook, IM chat and my email pages which are normal and customary actions for my multi-tasking personality. A notice in Facebook caught my eye and I was soon chatting away with someone I had not seen or spoken with in years. By the end of our conversation I was pouring words out on the paper like a speeding train – but not a single one was related to the needs of my clients.
Some people would say I got distracted, but I would say that I got focused.
They were words related to my own journey – ones that I have needed to put down but have always pushed aside for other, “more important” things. The inspiration shared in that quick chat broke through a barrier that had been holding me back for years. My purpose has to be the priority or my purpose will never be the priority.
I finished the writing with a grin of satisfaction and looked around. “What was I doing?” I knew that I had been tackling some project or another, but the burst of inspiration left me a bit dazed. I think that I would have eventually gotten back to the clients if it had not been for a scheduled trip, but it ended up taking me the rest of the day to get back to where I had started that morning.
This morning, I repeated the same process – and lo and behold again Facebook prompted a veer from my specified goal. My husband came in and looked over the pages I had opened and asked, “What are you supposed to be doing?” It is bad enough to know you are off track, but it is very frustrating when the spouse has to point it out!
I had led something that had nothing to do with my clients, my purpose or even me grab my attention. I invested time and energy into the distraction and one led to another. After my husband so kindly pointed out that I was chasing a squirrel I realized I had no idea what I was doing before the distraction. I was left wondering again, “what was I doing?”
The outcome seems the same, but the difference is that one event was focused and the other was scattered.
Yesterday I was following my purpose and refusing to let things get in my way. This morning I was following the things and ignoring my purpose. I know the difference, but still I managed to spend an entire hour doing nothing that would forward my purpose or fulfill my obligations.
Now that I know – what do I do to stay on the focused track?
Thoughts about Staying Focused on Purpose
– Know the purpose. I read in Rick and Bubba’s book, “We Be Big,” that they do other things but never let these asides hinder their purpose. They know exactly what they want to be doing and accomplishing and they keep their eye on that goal. Anytime something becomes so much that it begins to pull focus from that end goal, then they walk away – no matter how successful that new endeavor or how popular it might become. In the end the purpose has to be the purpose.
– Map out the journey. Sit down and create a plan about what you hope to do, how you hope to do and where you hope to do it. No one other that you will ever have to see the plan so be open and honest with your expectations. Set up a timeline for each of the visions that you have and then create steps that can help get you to those steps. Any time that you have a new possibility arise you can look at your map and see how it fits in or even IF it fits in. Move past it or move after it according to how it works with the map.
– Build a personal relationship with the one that designed your purpose. Commit time to prayer, to study and to meditation each and every day. If you want more then you have to be willing to give more. Group studies and church are great but they will never take the place of that personal,, intimate relationship with the Father.
Things have been hectic over the last several months. I allowed the trees that fell on our house to do more than just knock the house off balance. My own personal balance was knocked off as well. There truly is always an excuse to not do what I know to do – and often time they are great excuses that any normal person might accept. I am not normal, and if I am going to choose to live under the banner of peculiar then I have to dare to be bold enough not to settle for the excuses.
Staying focused starts with understand the purpose, knowing the path and knowing the Path Maker.
[…] Learning to stay focused can be a challenge, even on those days when I think I have it all together. I was this close . . . Netflix called out to me and I was this close to clicking the button. I had managed to get a lot of tasks done. The family enjoyed to full meals – all homemade. I had gone down my to-do list and marked things off. I deserved a break. […]